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Old 06-16-2013, 04:44 PM
3,279 posts, read 3,504,781 times
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I am about to go make a doctor's appointment, a dentist appointment, possibly even an emergency room. Something funky is going on with me that I just don't get it, except that it's awful and I don't know if it's possibly serious.

Around a week ago I started getting a soar throat which after a day went away, then I had a bit of phlegm I was producing. That stopped, but now I have consistent headaches and a slight toothache. The slight toothache is in a tooth which had given me problems a year ago but after a temporary filling was no longer giving me any trouble. The slight headache & toothache go away after taking ibuprofen, but once it wears off it will return, typically about 8 hours later.

A couple of times I would be woken up around 5 or 6 a.m. with a throbbing sensation in my tooth, again, I'd take an ibuprofen and the pain would disappear, and not return for quite awhile.

Today, most of the day I was okay but now around 5 p.m. my head is just killing me. The tooth hurts a little, but not that much, it's not one of those "argh!" excruciating type of pains at all. (Last year the tooth, prior to the temporary filling, hurt that bad a few times, but not since, not even the past week.) In fact if I bite down hard on the tooth I don't feel anything, it's not like last year when it was being treated & it was so sore & tender. Most of the unpleasantness is in my head. I don't have a fever, but my head just plain hurts.

Also, most of this time, I've had sinus pressure sensations. My ears pop & pop & pop constantly. Also, I do have history of catching bronchitis viruses, and some of the sensations, especially the headaches part as well as the phlegm part, can be a part of that, making me wonder if what I'm experiencing is a by-product of that.

What I am guessing is the problem:

*Left-over symptoms of the earlier infection, maybe bronchitis
*Sinus headaches
*My big fear--it's all on account of the tooth & that I have an infection which has spread
*Edit to posting--maybe it's a "sinus toothache" (http://www.livestrong.com/article/18...nus-toothache/) that describes how sinus pressure can create the SENSATION of a toothache. That could be it, because the non-toothache types of pains all seem like a sinusitis type of situation.

My money means are limited, my first notion was to go to the dentist to have the tooth checked out, after all it did have an infection a year ago that they treated. (They recommended extraction or a root canal, the latter of which of course is VERY expensive, and since it's a molar near the very back, I wanted to save it, so I held off--again, up until this past week, assuming it's the cause of all this, the temporary filling has caused it to do fine in the meanwhile). However if it's not the tooth & it's not just left-over remnants of what I had last week, I don't know what it is--and I don't recall any past instances where such illness caused a tooth of mine to hurt. I also don't understand why my ears keep popping.

I do have a family doctor I go to for certain things, he charges about $65 when I go see him & I wonder if he could figure out what is going on. Otherwise I'm thinking I should just head to the dentist & rule out it being an infection courtesy of the tooth (because I do know that such infections, left untreated, can get serious & even cause death courtesy of a brain abscess).

I don't know if it's something I should stress, but again, my ears pop a LOT. They have probably popped 12 times in the 10-odd minutes it's taken me to write up this posting, in fact.


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Old 06-16-2013, 05:10 PM
3,279 posts, read 3,504,781 times
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PS (I can't seem to edit the post) -- earlier I also experienced a lot of clogging of the nose to where I used VapoRub. At one point it also was very runny.

As of this moment--my tooth hurts very little but my head is killing me. My ears again, they're popping like crazy. Also when their is tooth pain it's always the one, not any others.

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Old 06-16-2013, 05:33 PM
Location: Alexandria, VA
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Sounds like sinuses
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Old 06-16-2013, 05:41 PM
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Larry, I'd start with the dentist since you had problems with it last year. Get an extraction since you don't want to pay for a root canal. Also try to get the dentist to give you an antibiotic. That way you can avoid the extra cost of going to the family doctor. Based on what you shared, that's how I'd approach this problem if I didn't have insurance and my resources were limited.
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Old 06-16-2013, 05:44 PM
Location: In a house
13,262 posts, read 33,261,971 times
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It sounds like sinuses to me too. You could have a sinus infection. I mean, you could have any number of things going on, but what you're describing, sounds pretty typical of a sinus infection.

My vote would be for the regular doctor first.
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Old 06-16-2013, 05:45 PM
Location: Beautiful Rhode Island
5,975 posts, read 9,949,616 times
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Have you tried any decongestant nasal sprays? This might help with the clogged sensations. Also, nasal rinses with salt water. However, if you think you might have a sinus infection (green or bright yellow phlegm) you really should get an antibiotic. I think it's worth the money to get checked out. Your fear will dissipate when you know for sure what's ailing you.
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Old 06-16-2013, 08:42 PM
14,244 posts, read 17,893,623 times
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When I had sinus infections, my upper gum would throb as if I had an abscessed tooth and my head would also throb. I sympathize with you, as the pain can be debilitating. Please either make an appt with your regular doctor or go to a walk-in inexpensive clinic ASAP.
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Old 06-16-2013, 09:08 PM
Location: Mostly in my head
19,239 posts, read 51,440,351 times
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I have been to the dentist a few times for what turned out to be a sinus infection. I'd see your family doc first.
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Old 06-16-2013, 11:58 PM
43,012 posts, read 86,089,992 times
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The reason I think he should go to the dentist first is because he turned down a root canal last year. Teeth with that problem don't stop being problems. They reoccur and are very painful. More recently I went through hell with terrible sinus pain that lasted forever. I went to my regular doctor many times and eventually an ENT. It turned out one of my tooth roots had broken through into my sinus.

If you have a regular doctor, it may be possible to get an antibiotic without an appointment. I just have to call my doctor's nurse with my symptoms, and he'll call a prescription into the pharmacy without seeing me for certain types of illnesses. Sinus infection is one of the things he'll do that for.
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Old 06-17-2013, 11:43 PM
Location: Victoria TX
42,671 posts, read 69,140,426 times
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I had exactly the same thing the OP describec, and it was a tooth. The infected tooth can "refer" pain to other parts of your head and face, and you will think it is somewhere else, but it has happened to me three times, and it always turned out to be an infected tooth.

The first time, I went to urgent care doctor clinic first, they couldn't find anything wrong. The dentist diagnosed it at a glance. Have it pulled.
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